I first met filmmaker and too cool dude Mike McCarthy while purchasing a copy of his film, Cigarette Girl (awesome dystopian film - must see!) but we really didn't converse until a while later. Mike McCarthy is very much a staple of Memphis - his house is a lovely shrine to the city, Elvis, and anything that was cool before "cool" was cool. When I learned that he would host a signing for HELVIS, his latest work, I knew I had to have it. HELVIS is a wild ride through the Underground with our "hero" Helvis as he meets comic censors of the past, comic book guru William M. Gaines, Grim Reapers who really DIGG it, almost dead demonic lovers, and . . . the Green Bay Packers?! Combined with crazy illustrations and satirical writing that pokes fun at those within and on the outside of fringe, HELVIS is for those who get their kicks outside of the norm!
The only question I have for McCarthy is this - when will the next installment come out? I read the book twice and am ready for more! Much thanks to 901 Comics for hosting the signing (go check them out - cool selection and one of the owners does an excellent cosplay of Moon Knight!) and thanks again to McCarthy in continuing to be an artist who does his own thing, Memphis style!
Before I forget - great usage of the Zippin Pippin! For those of you who don't know, the Zippin Pippin was a wooden roller coaster from our now gone amusement park, Libertyland. The Pippin was a simple roller coaster yet it provided much entertainment for the citizens of Memphis and beyond. Elvis used to open the park late at night or shut it down so that he could enjoy the ride without dealing with the crowds and screaming fans.
Yep, what a cool ride . . . . in the UNDERGROUND!